• Obama says disputed islands within scope of U.S.-Japan security treaty

    Reuters - 9 hours ago

    U.S. President Barack Obama said that islands at the center of a territorial dispute between Japan and China fall within the scope of the U.S.-Japan security treaty, the Yomiuri Shimbun daily said on Wednesday. Obama, who arrives in Japan later on Wednesday on the first step of a four-nation Asian visit, made the remarks in written replies to questions. Obama also said the United States, Tokyo's key ally, opposes any unilateral attempt to undermine Japan's administration of the Senkakus, which are also claimed by China, and that any disputes should be resolved through dialogue and diplomacy, not intimidation. More »Obama says disputed islands within scope of U.S.-Japan security treaty

  • President Lukashenko asks Belarusians to defend independence

    IANS - 9 hours ago

    Minsk, April 23 (IANS) President Alexander Lukashenko called on Belarusians to learn from the mistakes of neighbouring countries and defend their independence as the regional situation continues to escalate. "We must defend the most valuable thing that we have - the independence of Belarus," Xinhua quoted Lukashenko as saying in his national address in Minsk Tuesday. Ukraine is boiling; And no one knows how it will turn out," Lukashenko said. More »President Lukashenko asks Belarusians to defend independence

  • China's new energy car sales to double

    IANS - 9 hours ago

    Beijing, April 23 (IANS) The number of new energy cars sold in China this year may hit 35,000, double than that were sold in 2013, in the wake of government promoting the use of greener vehicles in the country, a new official forecast has revealed. According to a report on China's auto industry released Tuesday by the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM), sales may reach 60,000 if hybrid-power vehicles are taken into account, Xinhua reported. Data from the CAAM showed that 17,642 new energy cars were sold in China last year, up 37.9 percent from a year ago. More »China's new energy car sales to double

  • Indictment: Prosecutor targeted in kidnapping plot

    Associated Press - 10 hours ago

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina prosecutor was the intended target of an elaborate kidnapping plot, but the kidnappers looked up the wrong address on the Internet and abducted the prosecutor's father instead, according to an indictment released Tuesday. More »Indictment: Prosecutor targeted in kidnapping plot

  • Myanmar kids face threats due to Kachin fighting: Unicef

    IANS - 10 hours ago

    United Nations, April 23 (IANS) The Unicef has warned that children fraternity in Myanmar is facing different types of dangers in the light of recent fighting between government forces and Kachin rebels. The recent fighting and the resulting displacement of thousands of people, have significantly increased the risks to young people, including possible recruitment, limited access to basic services and the threat of landmines, Xinhua quoted the Unicef as saying Tuesday. An estimated 1,000 children are among those forced to leave their temporary homes amid the fighting between the Myanmar National Army and the Kachin Independence Army in areas of southern Kachin state, Unicef said in a release. "The fighting and the associated displacement of families has increased the health risks that children face, including by reducing their access to safe, reliable water and sanitation facilities," said Bertrand Bainvel, Unicef's representative to Myanmar. More »Myanmar kids face threats due to Kachin fighting: Unicef

  • Mourinho's cautious Chelsea frustrate Atletico

    Reuters - 10 hours ago

    By Iain Rogers MADRID (Reuters) - Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho returned to Spain with an ultra-cautious approach as his team earned a 0-0 draw with surprise Champions League semi-finalists Atletico Madrid in a first leg lacking in excitement on Tuesday. The stalemate at the Vicente Calderon, which Atletico coach Diego Simeone believes gives Chelsea a slight advantage in next week's return at Stamford Bridge, came at a cost for the 2012 winners, however. Goalkeeper Petr Cech was ruled out for the season after hurting his elbow, captain John Terry limped off with an ankle injury and midfielders Frank Lampard and John Obi Mikel earned bookings that mean they are suspended for the second leg. More »Mourinho's cautious Chelsea frustrate Atletico

  • Top Asian News at 11:30 p.m. GMT

    Associated Press - 10 hours ago

    JINDO, South Korea (AP) — For a moment there is silence in the tent where bodies from the ferry disaster are brought for identification. Then the anguished cries begin. The families who line up here to view the decomposing bodies have not known for nearly a week whether they should grieve or not. Now that they know, they sound like they're being torn apart. More »Top Asian News at 11:30 p.m. GMT

  • Novartis and GSK trade assets as pharma industry reshapes

    Reuters - 10 hours ago

    By Caroline Copley and Paul Sandle ZURICH/LONDON (Reuters) - Novartis and GlaxoSmithKline agreed to trade more than $20 billion worth of assets on Tuesday to bolster their best businesses and exit weaker ones as the drug industry contends with healthcare spending cuts and generic competition. The deals, which include Novartis' purchase of GSK's cancer drugs and GSK's acquisition of Novartis' vaccines business, came just after a newspaper report that AstraZeneca Plc had turned down a $101 billion bid approach from Pfizer Inc, a story that sent shares up across the sector. In addition, Novartis is selling its animal health arm to Indianapolis-based Eli Lilly for about $5.4 billion in cash. That would make Lilly's Elanco unit the world's second-largest animal health business when that deal closes early next year. More »Novartis and GSK trade assets as pharma industry reshapes

  • Hostage kidnapped in Mali probably dead: France

    IANS - 10 hours ago

    Paris, April 23 (IANS) A French hostage abducted in western Mali by Al Qaeda linked Movement for Unity and Jihad in West Africa (MUJWA) two years ago is probably dead, French government said Tuesday. More »Hostage kidnapped in Mali probably dead: France

  • Comcast nears deal with Charter on $18-$20 billion in divestitures: source

    Reuters - 10 hours ago

    (Reuters) - Comcast may divest about 4 million subscribers after its merger with Time Warner Cable and is working to reach an accord to sell a portion of those customers to Charter Communications, a source familiar with the matter said Tuesday. Comcast is studying what could be a two-phase process, where Charter would first acquire up to 1.5 million subscribers directly from Comcast, the source said on condition of anonymity because discussions were continuing and a final agreement had not been struck. Comcast would then spin off the rest of the 2.5 million subscribers into a separate, publicly traded company, which Charter would take a minority stake in, the source added. More »Comcast nears deal with Charter on $18-$20 billion in divestitures: source

  • El Salvador church leaders call for new gang truce

    Reuters - 10 hours ago

    By Nelson Renteria SAN SALVADOR (Reuters) - Church leaders in El Salvador on Tuesday said they want to revive a fragile truce between the country's powerful street gangs in order to curb a resurgence of violent crime. Catholic Bishop Fabio Colindres, who helped broker a 2012 deal between gang leaders, proposed that religious leaders establish new talks with gang leaders. The 2012 truce between the Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13) and rival gang Barrio 18 helped cut the Central American country's murder rate in mid-2013 to around five per day, a 10-year low, from around 12 a day. While the homicide rate is still below levels seen before the 2012 truce, the country still has one of the highest murder rates in the world due to ongoing turf battles between the gangs. More »El Salvador church leaders call for new gang truce

  • AT&T ups revenue growth forecast on new pricing model

    Reuters - 10 hours ago

    By Marina Lopes NEW YORK (Reuters) - AT&T Inc on Tuesday raised its forecast for full-year revenue growth to reflect its acquisition of LEAP wireless in March and the popularity of a new handset pricing model that charges customers for devices separately from their wireless plans. Like other carriers, AT&T is seeking growth in a nearly saturated environment, making strategies such as alternate pricing plans more crucial to attract customers. The company raised its forecast for full-year revenue growth to at least 4 percent from 3 percent. A higher-than-expected 35 percent of wireless customers transferred to NEXT, its new pricing plan, boosting quarterly revenue 3.6 percent from the year-earlier quarter. More »AT&T ups revenue growth forecast on new pricing model

  • Advocates vow to revive Navajo junk-food tax

    Associated Press - 10 hours ago

    FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — Facing a high prevalence of diabetes, many American Indian tribes are returning to their roots with community and home gardens, cooking classes that incorporate traditional foods, and running programs to encourage healthy lifestyles. More »Advocates vow to revive Navajo junk-food tax

  • Govt must turn over info on CIA prisons to defense

    Associated Press - 10 hours ago

    FORT MEADE, Md. (AP) — Prosecutors must turn over never-revealed details about the time a Guantanamo Bay detainee spent in secret CIA prisons after his arrest in connection with the deadly attack on the USS Cole in Yemen, according to a military judge's order released Tuesday. More »Govt must turn over info on CIA prisons to defense

  • Former AP photographer Harry Koundakjian dies

    Associated Press - 10 hours ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Harry Koundakjian, a former photographer and photo editor for The Associated Press in the Middle East and New York City, has died. He was 83. More »Former AP photographer Harry Koundakjian dies

  • Juniper's revenue rises as telecom clients ramp up networks

    Reuters - 10 hours ago

    Network gear maker Juniper Networks Inc reported a higher-than-expected 10 percent rise in quarterly revenue as U.S. telecom carriers spent more to ramp up their networks to manage increasing data traffic on smartphones and tablets. U.S. consumers will download and upload more data on their smartphones in 2018 than they did on their laptops in 2013, according to a February report by Cisco Systems Inc . Juniper's revenue from telecom customers, including Verizon Communications Inc and AT&T Inc , rose about 10 percent in the first quarter ended March 31. The telecom services business accounted for more than two-thirds of Juniper's total revenue. More »Juniper's revenue rises as telecom clients ramp up networks

  • Sen. Rand Paul says school choice could expand GOP

    Associated Press - 10 hours ago

    CHICAGO (AP) — Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul said voters in perennial Democratic strongholds such as Chicago and Milwaukee will think differently if they see Republicans not just visiting these places, but discussing issues pertinent to their circumstances. More »Sen. Rand Paul says school choice could expand GOP

  • Damages phase of BP Gulf spill trial set for January

    Reuters - 10 hours ago

    The high-stakes penalty phase of BP's trial over its role in the 2010 U.S. Gulf of Mexico oil spill will start next January, court officials said on Tuesday, and billions of dollars could be on the line. Fines under the Clean Water Act could top $17 billion, an amount more than BP's profit in 2013, which after items was $13.4 billion. U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier in New Orleans has considerable leeway and could assess a much smaller fine after the third and likely final stage of the trial, which will assess the environmental impact of the largest offshore spill in U.S. history. More »Damages phase of BP Gulf spill trial set for January

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